The Marion-Ralls Regional Port Authority exists to grow the economy of Marion and Ralls Counties through promoting transportation, logistics and revitalization. The Port’s statutory jurisdiction allows us to issue bonds, acquire land and enter into contracts to develop that land.
Like all Missouri port authorities, we are a creation of the state of Missouri. We are represented by a volunteer board of commissioners, appointed by the Marion County Commission, who provide expertise and focus to our mission.
Our goal is to generate efficient, effective and innovative transportation and development solutions, to support our existing employers, as well as those we are working to attract to the area. In addition, we work with our community partners throughout Marion and Ralls Counties for a number of purposes that include residential, commercial, mixed-use, recreation, industrial and port facilities.
Our tools can save and renovate underutilized buildings, buildings of historic value and blighted properties. We can use them to advance riverfront development. And we can help create and connect transportation services like air, rail, truck and barge
Unlike most public entities, Ports do not receive annual tax allocations from the city or state’s general fund. To fulfill our mission, we need a revenue stream to support our operations, capital investments and projects. One way we earn revenue is through our development tools. These tools were established by the state of Missouri – and the state outlined how and why the tools are to be used.
Port Improvement District
Port Improvement Districts (PID) allow the Port Authority to define the district and get Commission approval. If approved, a 1 percent sales tax is implemented within the boundaries of the district. Only users and tenants within the PID pay the tax. The tax collected is returned to the PID to make improvements.
AIM Zones were introduced about five years ago to provide port authorities with a revenue stream to fund infrastructure. They are exclusive to port authorities in Missouri.
The program gives the port the ability to receive 50 percent of the state taxes derived from any net-new jobs in an AIM zone.
The port authority can then reimburse a portion to businesses or agencies that created the jobs. To make the reimbursement, there must be a sufficient nexus between the project and the statutory mandate of port authorities
The port authority may use the other portion to reinvest in Marion County’s infrastructure.
Port Authorities can issue Chapter 68 Port Authority Revenue Bonds to finance development and redevelopment projects. They work by providing certain percentages of exemption on projects that have illustrated need and will create economic growth. In short, these projects must generate taxes for the city and/or create quality jobs.